The Next Voyage of the Daedalus and Other Random Tidbits

I’ve received excellent feedback from people who have read The Reluctant Captain and I’d like to thank everyone for their kind words. When you’re in the middle of writing something, you have no idea if anyone else other than you will like the story. I received good feedback from people I trust, but even then, I kept saying to myself, “They’re too nice – they don’t want to tell me how horrible it is.” But I’ve since received more and more feedback, I’m beginning to feel like Sally Fields: “You like me! You really like me!” I’ve had feedback from people who I thought might not be interested in it who have found they really liked it. And that is very heartening!

One of the most common questions I’ve received is “When are you going to write the next book?” The good news is that I have started on the yet unnamed sequel to The Reluctant Captain. Actually, I had started the sequel sometime ago and although I loved many of the chapters I wrote, I set it aside and I’m starting over. Part of the problem with the original sequel was that I set it too far away from the events of The Reluctant Captain that I was having problems making it work logically. My aborted attempt would have started seven years after the events of The Reluctant Captain right in the middle of World War I; there was too much of a gap to fill in and keep the story line plausible. Perhaps I’ll be able to use pieces of that down the road; that remains to be seen. Maybe I’ll publish them as a Book Extra – Deleted Scenes once I’ve finished the second book.

The new sequel will take place roughly a year and half to two years after the first book. Malcolm has become more accustomed to his role as Captain. I can’t tell you much more than that as I have barely finished two chapters. But the journey has begun and there will be a sequel, likely not available until sometime in 2016 (unless I get very lucky and find myself with huge periods of writing time!).

If you’ve enjoyed my book, I invite you to share your review on Amazon or I’m interested in hearing what you have to say, warts and all!

Happy Journeys,

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My First Book Signing and National Library Week

My First Book Signing and National Library Week

On Saturday, April 11, I held my first ever book signing as a benefit for the Sherburne Public Library. I’m proud to say that the signing raised $290.00 for the library! To everyone who came, thank you for your donation and I hope that you enjoy the book! I was humbled by the number of people who came out to buy the book.

Little did I realize that when I set the date with the library, that it was just before National Library Week (April 12 – 18). I’m a proud patron of our library and have reconnected with the library in a way I haven’t since I was a teen.  In my teenage years, I read as many fantasy books as I could lay my hands on. And not having  money to constantly buy new books, that meant many trips to the library to see what new books I could find. I had an interest in classical music and used the library to check out many records (for you young whipper snappers, those big, round black things, although I understand that vinyl is making a small comeback).

During college and for over a decade afterward, I drifted away from the library. I still read, but I felt like I didn’t need the library because I could buy any book I wanted and I often did. And then, I went through some tough times. I quit my job to eventually start my own company and things became very lean. I reactivated my library card and started to make use of the library because I couldn’t afford to buy all the books I wanted to read – but I could still read them. When going to the movies wasn’t an option because of the cost, we could borrow them for up to a week from the library.

And now, ten years later, I still use the library as my first resource for books. And since my day job requires a 40 minute commute, I’ve started to use that time to listen to audio books, again from the library. My wife (mostly) and I still get movies from the library when we could easily obtain them from Amazon or any other service. Libraries are a wonderful way to encourage reading without encouraging consumption – they are the original recyclers! A book in a library can have hundreds of readers in its life; a book in a bookstore might only see a handful of readers. Since I’m now a published writer, I should tell you to buy the book and not get it from the library. But I’m not going to do that. Sure, making money off the sale is a good thing, but I really just want people to read my book and enjoy it. Which is why one of the first things I did when I received my books was to donate a copy to the library where I live now and the library in the even smaller town where I was raised and my parents still live.

And libraries are also vibrant places, not the places where stern librarians “shush” you for being too loud. Our library offers children’s programs, story time, Tai Chi, and a new writer’s group. I was fortunate enough to put on a “Zombie Makeup” class at another local library last October. I would guess that if you walked into your local library right now, you’d be surprised at all of the activities and programs that are offered.

So take some time during National Library Week and visit your local library! I wouldn’t be surprised if you found you were glad that you did!

Book Signing

Happy Journeys!

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